March 20-23, 2005

Mark Sudduth and I left Wilmington, NC on Saturday the 19th headed for the National Hurricane Conference in New Orleans.  We would first stop by Gulf Shores, Alabama where Hurricane Ivan slammed ashore in September.  We wanted to see what damage was still visible and how the area had started to recover from the devastating storm surge of 10-12 feet in places.  We arrived on the afternoon of the 20th in Gulf Shores to find a lot of the water front areas still closed and taped off.  Below are a few of the photos taken around the area.

This is the area where Mark and John left the HLP vehicle "Rodeo" as Ivan approached.  It was just on the other side of the structure with the ramp in the photo above that they strapped the Rodeo down and turned on all of the weather gathering equipment to recorde Hurricane Ivan's wrath.

Ivan's damage is still very evident all along the coastline in Gulf Shores.

Still fenced off as repairs have yet to be completed.

Even away from the immediate coastline, there was still plenty of building damage and destruction that has yet to be cleaned up and or repaired.  This road was covered by feet of sand after the storm.

Looking west, I tried to shoot a few photos from the same area as Mark and John to do some comparison shots of before, after and months after the storm.

This is the exact spot where the Rodeo came to rest after Ivan's massive surge up rooted it from its location at the shoreline of the Gulf Of Mexico.  Click here to see John's photo.

Souvenir City is back open after Ivan collapsed part of it's roof.  Click here to see John's photo.

If you have seen the DVD, you know that Mark and John came up on this ABC store where the front walls had been washed away and a bunch of unbroken liquor bottles  came to rest on front of the store.

This dive shop truly was the Down Under Dive Shop after Ivan.  We went inside to see the store and talk to the owner and he showed us where he had marked the high water mark from Ivan.  He told us "this store is 1.1 miles from the Gulf" and it was under about 4 feet of water at its highest point.

Trying to shoot a photo to compare with here, in John's photo the water level was just beyond Sawgrass Landing to the left.  It certainly looks a little different today than it did the day after the storm.  Click here to see John's photo.

Now imagine the water level to the middle of the windows in the store.

Cici's Pizza has just reopened in the past few weeks or so after Ivan caused the front wall to collapse.  Click here to see John's photo.

And here this gas station had repaired the awning that had been ripped apart by Ivan's strong winds.  Click here to see John's photo.

After leaving Gulf Shores, we headed on to New Orleans and the National Hurricane Conference for one day where Mark would head a panel at the conference discussing what we do as well as a few of our special gusts on the panel.

Hurricane Conference: Page 2


All Images Copyright Jesse V. Bass III and

Copyright 2005 All Rights Reserved